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VoIP - Voice Over Internet Protocol

VoIP Overview

The technology that allows users to make telephone calls using their broadband connection is called Voice Over Internet Protocol (VoIP). Phone calls are made using a data network instead of an analog phone line. Voice signals from your telephone are converted into a digital signal. The signal is then converted back again so that anyone with a regular telephone number can speak to you. Some of the services that use VoIP allow users to only call other people using the same service. There are other services that allow users to call anyone with a telephone number.

Placing a VoIP Call

The way you place your call will depend upon the service you have. If you use an adaptor to place telephone calls, you will pick up the telephone and dial a number. The telephone call will go to the VoIP provider through your local telephone company. Another way to place a VoIP call is by using a microphone headset and your keyboard. When you type the telephone number by using your keyboard, the call will be routed through your modem.

Who Can You Call If You Have VoIP?

Some VoIP services allow you to only call others who have the same VoIP service. In other cases you may be able to call any number, anywhere. You may be able to call a local telephone number, a long distance number, an international number or a mobile telephone number. If you have a VoIP service that allows you to call anyone, the other person will not need any special equipment, just his telephone.

What Are Some Advantages of VoIP?

One of the biggest advantages of VoIP, is that it can save you money. We are all accustomed to using the Public Switched Telephone Network. In many cases, long distance and international calls result in high telephone bills. This is because long distance carriers can charge a rate per minute for each minute we are on the phone. VoIP offers flat rates. So it does not matter how long you talk to someone, you will not be increasing your bill for service. You can also talk to several people at one time using VoIP service. Another advantage to using VoIP is that you can use your computer and talk on the telephone at the same time. Again this can be a money saving factor since many people pay for separate telephone and computer lines.

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